Graduate Academic Programs

Master's Degree Programs

Master of Science in Recreation Degree (MSR), Tourism Management Major

Description of Program

The tourism management program prepares students to enter the world's largest and most diverse industry. Tourism is the business of attracting and catering to the needs and expectations of visitors. Although the tourism industry includes transportation, travel brokers, and food and lodging, students in this program focus on the marketing and management of tourist facilities and destinations. These include government tourism divisions, hotels, resorts, convention centers, theme parks, visitor centers, cruises, and airlines.

Degree Requirements

A minimum of 35 credit hours is required for this program.  The Master of Science in Recreation degree must include a minimum of 20 credits from the Department of Recreation, Park, and Tourism Studies.  A minimum 3.0 cumulative grade point average (GPA) is required for graduation. A minimum grade of C– is required in each course. All electives for completing the degree must be approved by the advisor.

Complete each of the following courses (12 cr.):

  • HPER-R 500 Philosophy of Leisure and Recreation (3 cr.)
  • HPER-R 520 Organizational Leadership for Leisure Services (3 cr.)
  • HPER-T 590 Introduction to Research in Health, Kinesiology, and Recreation (3 cr.)
  • HPER-T 591 Interpretation of Data in Health, Kinesiology, and Recreation (3 cr.)

Complete one of the following courses (3 – 5 cr.):

  • HPER-R 539 Master's Project in Administration (3-4 cr.)
  • HPER-R 599 Master's Thesis (5 cr.)

Complete four of the following emphasis courses (12 cr.):
Select four courses with approval of advisor

  • HPER-R 580 Tourism Planning and Management in Recreation, Park, and Nonprofit Agencies (3 cr.)
  • HPER-R 522 Economics and Marketing for Leisure and Tourism (3 cr.)
  • HPER-R 540 Policy Studies in Outdoor Recreation and Tourism (3 cr.)
  • HPER-R 526 Cultural Heritage Tourism (3 cr.)
  • HPER-R 523 Visitor Behavior (3 cr.)

Complete remaining electives to reach the required minimum 35 credits. (6 – 8 cr.):
Select electives with approval of advisor.  The following courses are recommended:

  • STAT 511 Statistical Methods I (3 cr.)
  • STAT 512 Applied Regression Analysis (3 cr.)
  • SOC-S 554 Statistical Techniques in Sociology I (3 cr.)
  • SOC-S 650 Statistical Techniques in Sociology II (3 cr.)
  • PSY-P 553 Advanced Statistics in Psychology I (3 cr.)
  • PSY-P 554 Advanced Statistics in Psychology II (3 cr.)
  • HPER-R 525 Administrative Theory and Management Practices in Leisure Services (3 cr.)
  • HPER-T 592 Statistical Techniques of Research in Health, Kinesiology, and Recreation (3 cr.)
  • GEOG-G 500 Research Problems in Geography (4 cr.)
  • GEOG-G 540 Topics in Environmental Geography (3 cr.)
  • ANTH-E 663 Exhibiting Cultures (3 cr.)
  • ANTH-E 600 Gender /Labor Politics—East Asia (3 cr.)
  • ANTH-A 600 Cultures and Corporations (3 cr.)
  • ANTH-L 400 Topical Seminar in the Ethnology of Communication (3 cr.)
  • ANTH-L 600 Topical Seminar in the Ethnology of Communication (3 cr.)
  • ANTH-E 500 Pro-seminar in the Ethnology of Communication (3 cr.)
  • HPER-R 515 Special Concerns in Parks and Recreation (3 cr.)

Prerequisites (If required)

  • HPER-R 391 Graduate Prerequisite in Recreation and Park Administration (3 cr.)
  • HPER-R 423 Visitor Behavior (3 cr.)
  • TCEM 461 Tourism Research Planning & Development (3 cr.) at IUPUI or HPER-R 490 Research and Evaluation (3 cr.)
  • TCEM 472 Global Tourism Seminar (3 cr.) at IUPUI or HPER-R 350 Sustainable Tourism (3 cr.)
  • TCEM 499 Operational Tourism Analysis (3 cr.) at IUPUI or HPER-R 499 Research in Recreation
Special Opportunities

Due to its global significance, tourism often involves practices in the international arena. The program offers overseas courses and trips that allow students to explore a multicultural landscape in a fashion that is conducive to learning. Further, internship opportunities can help students to preview the operation of interest within the tourism business in order to build a competitive edge in the field of specialization (e.g., hotel/resort management) prior to graduation.


Typical tourism job titles are hotel manager, marketing director of a city visitor and convention bureau, coordinator of a university conference bureau, event and meeting planner, researcher for a state department of tourism, and manager for a theme park.

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